In times of remote working, offices are currently not primarily a place of work, but are increasingly being used in order to interact with colleagues. Unofficial meetings are playing an ever-greater role, which is why companies are making an ever-greater number of relaxation zones available that offer well-designed support for such leisurely communications. The furniture selected for this purpose have a correspondingly pleasant character destined to emphasize the informal feel of the office premises. The “Lighting Pad Lounge” is a prime example of this development – a lighting-cum-acoustics solution made of molded wood. The luminaire is the brainchild of the Nimbus Group, whose main focus is on LED lighting systems and acoustically effective room dividing systems. The design was created by Dietrich F. Brennenstuhl, who together with Sibylle Thierer and Jörg Schmid runs the Stuttgart-based company and who describes the “Lighting Pad Lounge” as the “climax of product development efforts at Nimbus Group”.
The hybrid of luminaire and acoustic panel consists of several layers of real-wood veneer on the upper side and resembles an organically curved bowl. The woods available are Santos Palisander, Black Cherry or Classic Oak, all of them the product of sustainable forestry and with satin surfaces thanks to the production method. “This design feature turns the luminaire into the archetype of a new product genre, namely lighting furniture,” is how Brennenstuhl explains the design approach. The underside of the luminaire is coated with an acoustically absorbent molded non-woven that can be chosen in white, grey, or black. The lenses integrated into it ensure dazzle-free light below but the system is so discreet that the light is first visible when it encounters a surface. On the upper side, the luminaire likewise features lenses inserted into the molded wood shell, shedding indirect and atmospheric light on the ceiling.
The “Lighting Pad Lounge” doesn’t just score points for its homely design and dual functions as source of light and acoustic solution, it also superbly incorporates digital technology, too. The relevant solutions are developed in a new competence center in Stuttgart – a joint venture by the Nimbus Group with Häfele, a company that manufactures fittings and electronic locking technology. There are numerous possible settings and possible control variants as a result: The light, with its variable color temperature from 2,700 to 4,000 Kelvin can, for example, be dimmed via Bluetooth using the “Häfele Connect Mesh App”. The direct light component is 1,700 Lumen and the indirect light component up to 1,800 Lumen, something that enables all manner of lighting scenarios. Moreover, the luminaire can be smoothly moved up and down its refined steel cables by hand or using a gesture sensor. In summary, the Nimbus Group has dreamed up a product that fits playfully into different areas – be it offices, restaurants, hotels or your own home.